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A mere week before its Independence anniversary, Barbados has received some knocks from a church leader, who said it was facing a crisis of faith, hope and charity and questioned its claim to be a Christian nation. Dean of St Michael’s Cathedral, Dr Frank Marshall, made the charges yesterday when he delivered the sermon at the National Independence Service at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre. In the 30-minute address, Marshall appealed to Barbadians to again embrace the things which made them an outstanding people long before Independence – including modesty, self-respect, tolerance, selflessness and a strong community spirit. He told more than 500 people attending the service that Barbados’ crisis was “deeper” than economic and financial troubles. “What we face is a crisis of faith and hope, and certainly charity itself,” he said.